News Shorts: Modolo leaves Dauphiné ahead of team time trial

Tinkoff-Saxo hoping for better results in Dauphiné’s mountains; Van Aert training again after wrist Surgery; New Wanty kit

Modolo leaves Dauphiné ahead of team time trial

Lampre-Merida will be without the services of sprinter Sacha Modolo for the rest of the Critérium du Dauphiné after the Italian sprinter returned to Italy to help take care of a relative's health issues, according to a statement the team released Tuesday.

Modolo did not start Tuesday’s stage 3 team time trial at the French WorldTour race, leaving the Lampre-Merida with just seven riders. Nevertheless, the team rode to an eighth-place finish, 47 seconds behind stage winner BMC.

Modolo has been one of the top sprinters in the peloton this season, winning a stage at the presidential Tour of Turkey and taking two stage wins at the Giro d’Italia last month. The 27-year-old Italian was second during the opening stage at Dauphine, and he was third during stage 2. After Wednesday’s stage, however, opportunities for the sprinters will be limited as the race enters the Alps.

Wide arm celebration for Sacha Modolo (Lampre-Merida)
Lampre-Merida's Sacha Modolo wins a race earlier this year. (Tim de Waele/TDWSport)

Tinkoff-Saxo hoping for better results in Dauphiné's mountains

After finishing third-from-last and ceding 1:30 to winner BMC in the team time trial Tuesday at the Critérium du Dauphiné, Tinkoff-Saxo are hoping their roster of climbing specialists can spring back in the upcoming mountain stages.

"This deficit of 1:30 now leaves the door open to other tactical choices and options, such as breakaways," said team director Patxi Vila. "We will stick to the overall plan to try positioning [Robert] Kiserlovski for the GC, and we still have a number of very difficult mountain stages ahead.

"[Kiserlovski] feels in very good shape and we will see whether he can be at the front on the climbs. We also have to keep in mind his form ahead of the Tour de France and see what we can achieve day by day."

Wednesday’s 228km fourth stage from Anneyron to Sisteron looks like another day for the sprinters, but the race enters the Alps on Thursdy for the first of four consecutive mountain stages. The eight-stage WorldTour race ends Sunday in Modane Valfréjus.

Robert Kiserlovski leads Tinkoff-Saxo at the Dauphine.
Robert Kiserlovski and Tinkoff-Saxo are hoping for better luck in the Dauphiné's mountains.(Bettini Photo)

Van Aert training again after wrist Surgery

Wout van Aert (Vastgoedservice-Golden Palace) trained today for the first time after surgery to repair a broken wrist he suffered in crash at the Tour of Belgium. The silver medalist at this year's UCI Cyclo-cross World Championships fractured the wrist in the 2.HC stage race last month.

"I made today a trip of about 50 kilometers and it was decent," said Van Aert, who is still wearing a brace on his recovering wrist. "Ideally it is not with that brace, but it is important that I already could brake easily, which gives me a sense of security."

Van Aert’s team said it is not yet known when he will return to competition.

"As long as I have to wear the brace, it is not an option. So that may take a while. I'm just glad I can train on the road again."

Wout Van Aert (Vastgoedservice - Golden Palace Continental Team) showing the effects of a crash
Wout Van Aert is training outside again following a crash at the Belgium Tour.

Special one-off kit for Wanty-Groupe Gobert at Tour de Suisse

Pro-Continental team Wanty-Groupe Gobert will race the Tour de Suisse in new kit, featuring the addition of two sponsors, that replaces its normal blue with a combination of bright turquoise, red and black.

Enrico Gasparotto will be leading Wanty-Groupe Gobert at the Tour de Suisse, the ninth WorldTour race the team has been invited to in 2015, with stage wins his ambition.

"I felt really good last week in Luxembourg and was one of the strongest in the race. However sometimes the strongest riders don’t win. I am happy with the training I did at home and feel well-prepared for the GP Aargau/Gippingen and the Tour de Suisse. My goal is to win Gippingen and go for a stage win in Tour de Suisse," Gasparotto said.

Joining the Italian for the GP du canton d'Argovie and Tour de Suisse will be Jérôme Baugnies, Francis De Greef, Simone Antonini, Marco Minnaard, Frederik Backaert, Marco Marcato and Mirko Selvaggi.

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